• Expertise, R&D

 

Our Québec plants as benchmarks

Our Québec plants regularly welcome guests. From students eager to learn more about metallurgy to partners and members of the community, these visits are a great opportunity for us to showcase our facilities and highlight the expertise and passion of our people for what they do best.

 

Expertise: an exportable Québec resource

Alcoa Canada Global Primary Products employees enjoy a solid reputation throughout North America and beyond. Over the last few years, over 100 of our employees from Baie-Comeau, Bécancour and Deschambault have gone abroad to share best practices with their new colleagues at the Fjardaál Smelter in Iceland and at the anode plant in Mosjøen, Norway. The latter in turn came to Québec to be trained on our fully operational equipment while theirs was still being installed or tested.

 

The expertise or our employees is currently being applied to an industrial complex in Raz Az Zawr, Saudi Arabia. This megaproject, valued at more than $10 billion, includes a bauxite mine, an alumina refinery, a smelter and a rolling mill. Ma’aden is Alcoa’s Saudi partner in this initiative.

 

Smelting Center of Excellence

 

Demonstrating its confidence in the worldwide reach of Québec’s aluminum expertise, Alcoa chose to base here, at our Deschambault Smelter, one of its five global Centers of Excellence. The Smelting Center of Excellence brings together Alcoa’s foremost primary aluminum smelting experts, including several from Québec.

 

University Partnership

 

In 2010, Alcoa helped create the NSERC/Alcoa Industrial research chair on Advanced Modelling of Electrolytic Cells and Energy Efficiency (MACE3) at Laval University. Electrolytic cells are where it is most crucial that we reduce our energy consumption. This research program is conducted in four areas: energy efficiency at electrolytic cells, anode quality, process stability, and recovery of heat loss. The research team consists of five professors, about 20 master’s and doctoral students, and a group of research professionals and technicians.

 

Industrial Partnership

 

In order to develop and share expertise and innovative applications of aluminum, and especially to double the volume of aluminum processed in Québec over the next decade, the members of the Aluminium Association of Canada, including GPP Canada, established the Québec aluminum industry cluster, AluQuébec, in 2012. The mission of the cluster is to bring together the various Québec organizations involved in aluminum production, usage and R&D to create a Québec synergy that will promote training, technological development . . . and processing!